CNN's GUT CHECK for October 11, 2013
October 11th, 2013
05:48 PM ET
9 years ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for October 11, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for October 11, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

CHRIS CHRISTIE: "If I was in the Senate right now, I'd kill myself," the Republican governor of New Jersey told the Philadelphia Inquirer's editorial board. The response came when Christie was asked what he would do if he was a member of the upper chamber during the current crisis. "This is why I've never had any interest in being in a legislative body."

NO DEAL: HOUSE REPUBLICANS DEBT OFFER falls short of the President's demand to immediately reopen the government. The GOP proposal would temporarily raise the debt ceiling, but it would not lift the shutdown right away. The House vote on a short term debt ceiling could come over the weekend.

SEPARATE THE ISSUES: Republican leaders are pushing to separate the two issues, allowing a vote to raise the debt limit while continuing talks with the White House over a government funding bill that would end the shutdown. This position is similar to what GOP leaders presented to the President Thursday. The aides declined to give specifics on what kinds of conditions GOP leaders were asking to be attached to that spending bill, but say an agreement to reopen the government could come within days.

FEELING THE PAIN: FEDERAL WORKERS' FIND 40% LESS IN PAYCHECK Federal workers get paid every two weeks. Friday was officially payday for work completed from Sept. 22 through Oct. 5., according to the General Services Administration. This paycheck was the first to reflect furloughs due to the federal shutdown. – Jennifer Liberto

GOODBYE COMPASSIONATE CONSERVATISM: Red Meat Rhetoric at Values Voter Summit…
REPUBLICAN SEN. TED CRUZ OF TEXAS: “These are not typical times. The challenges facing this country are unlike any we have ever seen. You look at our Constitution, you look at our Bill of Rights, this is an administration that seems bound and determined to violate every single of our Bill of Rights…”
DR. BEN CARSON: "Obamacare is really, I think, the worst thing that has happened in this nation since slavery. And it is – in a way, it is slavery, in a way," he said. "Because it is making all of us subservient to the government." – Ashley Killough

AND THE NAACP RESPONDS TO CARSON: “I am really surprised at Dr. Carson, who is so highly revered in his discipline, would make a statement like this,” Hilary O. Shelton, Washington Bureau Director for the NAACP told Gut Check. “It showed a misunderstanding of slavery and the Affordable Care Act.”

MARKET WATCH: Dow, S&P snap 2-week losing streak. NASDAQ ends the week lower after 5-week winning streak.

(Answer below)

A number of hecklers interrupted Republican Sen. Ted Cruz when he was speaking at the Values Voter Summit in Washington. What were they protesting?

MICHELLE (@mjaconiCNN) & DAN (@DanMericaCNN)
What caught our eye today in politics

The top line numbers from Friday's NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll put Republicans in the House and the Senate on alert: "By a 22-point margin (53 percent to 31 percent), the public blames the Republican Party more for the shutdown than President Barack Obama – a wider margin of blame for the GOP than the party received during the poll during the last shutdown in 1995-96."

Sure, all of Washington has been hurt by the shutdown, but poll after poll shows that the GOP is bearing the brunt of the blame for the dysfunction. Some Democrats, like the liberal group Americans United for Change, are even sending gift baskets to Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas for orchestrating the shutdown.

But has Washington's inability to get anything done really hurt Cruz?

According to the poll, his unfavorable numbers (28 percent) outpace his favorable numbers (14 percent). But that is the case for most leaders in the House and Senate.

What's more, the shutdown has endeared Cruz to the far right of his party, as evidenced by the raucous response he received Friday at the Value's Voter Summit – an annual meeting of social conservatives.

Tony Perkins, head of the Family Research Council and organizer of the conservative summit, told CNN's Peter Hamby on Thursday that Cruz was the "de facto leader of the Republican Party"

"He is what people are looking for. Somebody who will stand up and say, 'This is what I stand for, this is what I believe,'" Perkins said.

He continued: "What he is doing is he is filling vacuum. And Mike Lee as well. There has been a complete breakdown between the formal GOP leadership and the outside conservative groups. There is even a breakdown between the GOP leadership and the conservatives on the inside. So you have Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Rand Paul, Jim Jordan, Steve Scalise and others who are filling that void."

the LEDE
Did you miss it?

Leading CNNPolitics: Obama, Boehner in call agree all sides should keep talking
President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner agreed in a phone call Friday that talks should continue on ending the partial government shutdown and avoiding a possible default, but the President "has some concerns" with the latest House GOP proposal considered an opening gambit in budget brinksmanship, White House spokesman Jay Carney said.- Tom Cohen and Greg Botelho

Leading Drudge: Throw The Bums Out!
That’s the message 60 percent of Americans are sending to Washington in a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, saying if they had the chance to vote to defeat and replace every single member of Congress, including their own representative, they would. Just 35 percent say they would not. – Domenico Montanaro

Leading HuffPo: New Ransom: Spending Cuts
Officials say House Republicans are offering to pass legislation to avert a default and end the partial government shutdown as part of a package that includes cuts in benefit programs. Senior aides to Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor outlined the proposal at a late-night White House meeting Thursday with senior administration officials. – The Associated Press

Leading Politico: The year the government broke
In the nearly two decades since the last government shutdown, fierce partisanship, recurrent brinkmanship and routine dysfunction have been the national governing norm. For a full generation, the widespread consensus has been that Washington is “broken.” And yet it’s hard to shake the feeling that historians will someday look back on the cheerless battles of 2013 as qualitatively different — more relentless, more remorseless and more depressing than the other fights of the past 20 years. – Todd S. Purdum

Leading The New York Times: Ryan in Forefront, Again, for the G.O.P.
The budget impasse has offered Paul D. Ryan, who had receded into the shadows after his vice-presidential defeat, an opening to reassert himself. – Jonathan Weisman

The political bites of the day

- Senate Republicans meet with POTUS -
REPUBLICAN SEN. SUSAN COLLINS OF MAINE IN AN INTERVIEW WITH CNN: “The president listened carefully. He said that some of the elements were issues we could work on. But he certainly did not endorse it. There were many conversations on the long-term debt problem. Many members expressed concern about raising the debt limit without having a specific plan to deal with our 17-trillion dollar national debt. It was a good exchange but it was an inconclusive exchange.”

- Bozell to GOP (and McCain): Stop Whining -
BRENT BOZELL OF THE MEDIA RESEARCH CENTER AT THE VALUES VOTERS SUMMIT: “I for one am sick of the whining that is going on from the Republican Party and from some in the conservative movement itself. … This is what they didn’t tell you: Until Ted Cruz came along with Mike Lee they had no Plan B. They had no Plan A. Nobody to my thinking, nobody has been more blatant in his intellectual dishonesty than Senator John McCain.”

- Check please -
JIMMY FALLON ON HIS LATE NIGHT COMEDY SHOW: “You guys know I love going out to eat, but I don't know about this. i heard about this new restaurant here in New York that doesn't let customers talk to each other during their meals. Yeah. When they heard that, Obama and republicans were like ‘Table for 200, please.’ Perfect for us.”

What stopped us in 140 characters or less

Reid Wilson (@PostReid)
CA Gov. Jerry Brown vetoes gun control bills that would've restricted access to some semi-auto weapons -

Peter Hamby (@PeterHambyCNN)
Rubio plays it safe, delivers an entire speech without mentioning immigration reform

Alex Pappas (@AlexPappas)
An interesting speech from Rand Paul at Values Voter Summit: Tells stories of worldwide Christian persecution

Conrad Hackett (@conradhackett)
99% of Christians live outside the Middle East-North Africa region where Christianity began.

Chloe Maxmin (@chloemaxmin)
The title of this NYT article gave me the chills: "By 2047, Coldest Years May Be Warmer Than Hottest in Past." …

Wardah Khalid (@YAmericanMuslim)
Sorry Malala. "Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons wins 2013 Nobel Peace" Prize via @washingtonpost

Max Fisher (‏@Max_Fisher)
Malala is amazing but I've felt deeply uncomfortable with all the Western fawning over her. This is my case for why:

Jill Dougherty (@cnnjill)
The United States is still getting rid of its chemical weapons

daveweigel (@daveweigel)
Louie Gohmert on John McCain: "A guy who's been to Syria and supported al Qaeda and rebels." #VVS13


Upwards of eight protesters heckled Republican Sen. Ted Cruz at the Values Voter Summit on Friday about immigration reform that is currently stalled on Capitol Hill.

The hecklers shouted questions like "Don’t you want to fix immigration laws?" and "Isn’t it a moral imperative to keep families together?"

Cruz responded from the podium, "I wish you would participate in the democratic process through speaking respectfully." The audience applauded. Cruz continued, "It seems that President Obama's paid political operatives are out in force today. And you know why? Because the men and women in this room scare the living daylights out of them."

The protesters came from a host of immigration groups, including United We Dream and the Campaign for Community Change. In a statement to CNN, the latter group said they were trying to tap into Cruz's sway with the House GOP.

"Ted Cruz has been basically the darling of the conservative wing," said Donna De La Cruz, a spokeswoman for the group. "We thought we would go there to confront him and use his influence to get the House GOP to act on the immigration reform bill. They seem to be listening to him."

(why aren’t you in it)

Congrats to Kylie Jane Kremer (@KylieJaneKremer) for correctly answering today’s Gut Check Trivia question. Happy weekend, all.

Tips or comments? Our inbox awaits:
Anyone can sign up for Gut Check by emailing

Do you have a friend who wants to sign up for GUT CHECK or our new CNNPolitics Breaking News Alerts? Click here, log on and scroll down.

Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. Thomas

    Ted Cruz , How the Grinch " Cruz " Stole Christmas !

    October 11, 2013 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  2. TruthwillPrevail

    Sad isn't it that people think this is about political parties.....the MEDIA is totally coverage on our massive DEBT as if it doesn't exist.....close to $17 TRILLION and we have no plan on how to pay it...not even the interest.. lets wake them up....wake up AMERICA!!!!

    October 11, 2013 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  3. Zachary from Telesales

    They were hardly hecklers, with those questions. Compare to Republican hecklers, who ask such things as "why do you hate freedom" and "why are you trying to destroy America". Really, "don't you want to fix immigration laws" is a perfectly normal question, and Cruz acted as rudely as I've come to expect from Cruz lately. The guy's not a statesman, he's a heckler with a Senate seat.

    October 11, 2013 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |